Broadband connections at sea are for more than simply web browsing and phone calls to family or the office. Take a look at this video on the U.S. Coast Guard's website. It offers a fantastic look at how the USCG is using real-time biometrics to identify refugees picked up at sea and spot potential felons. (Tip: depending on the speed of your data connection, it may take a few moments for enough of the video to download before it starts playing.)
The cutter highlighted here, the Key Largo, was one of the first to be equipped with a KVH TracPhone V7 and the mini-VSAT Broadband service as part of the original 30+ vessel deployment. The V7 provided the broadband data pipe that enabled the onboard biometrics system to communicate with multiple law enforcement databases on shore, providing the crew with a rapid response regarding potential law enforcement red flags. We're looking forward to bringing this same level of connectivity to other USCG cutters over the next several years.